Jazz Preview: Return of band who pay tribute to Mingus

Yorkshire audiences have two opportunities next week to hear Arnie Somogyi’s tribute to the music of Charles Mingus, Scenes in the City.

Originally wary of taking on the work of the tempestuous, tormented but supremely talented composer and bassist, Somogyi accepted the challenge as a special fund raiser for Sheffield Jazz in 2008. The reaction from both musicians and audience was so encouraging he decided to maintain the band and develop the concept.

Three years later the group appears at Seven Arts on Thursday and Sheffield Jazz on Friday. Bassist Somogyi is joined by by saxophonists Alan Barnes and Tony Kofi, trombonist Alistair White, pianist Mark Edwards and drummer Clark Tracey. Expect to hear Mingus favourites such as Boogie Stop Shuffle, Fables of Faubus and Better Get Hit in Your Soul as well as lesser known compositions by a grumpy genius who gained the respect of his peers despite a volatile temperament which sometimes led to violence. Mingus died in 1979, aged 56, but his influence remains.

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Wakefield Jazz returns after its Easter break tonight with a shining new vocal talent, Sarah Ellen Hughes, teamed with tenor saxophonist Dave O’Higgins in an evening previewing their forthcoming album. Snake Davis presents his soulful saxophone playing for Huddersfield Jazz at the Lawrence Batley Theatre tomorrow.

Scenes in the City, Seven Arts, Leeds, May 19. 0113 2626 777, Millennium Hall, May 20. 0114 276 7093. Sarah Ellen Hughes. Wakefield Jazz, tonight. 01977 680542. Snake Davis, Lawrence Batley Theatre, May 14. 01484 430258.